Intellectual Property and the Coronavirus Pandemic — Creative Commons Summit 2020

Creative Commons Summit 2020 Tuesday, October 20 • 09:00–09:30

The Internet Archive and The National Emergency Library: Copyright Law and the Coronavirus COVID-19


The Internet Archive established the National Emergency Library to provide for access to knowledge for those who were unable to access their usual libraries, schools, and educational institutions. In response, four large publishers have brought a copyright lawsuit against the Internet Archive, alleging both direct copyright infringement, as well as secondary copyright infringement. The Author’s Guild has supported this action. The litigation raises a range of issues in respect of copyright infringement, the defence of fair use, library exceptions, digital lending, and intermediary liability.

Creative Commons Summit 2020 Wednesday, October 21 • 08:00–09:00

The People’s Vaccine: Intellectual Property and Access to Medicines in the Age of COVID-19


This presentation explores intellectual property and access to medicines in the age of COVID-19 and vaccine nationalism. It will consider the campaign led by Winnie Byanyima of UNAIDS for the development of a People’s Vaccine. The WHO has established the ACT Accelerator in order to boost research, development, and deployment of COVID-19 technologies. Costa Rica proposed a COVID-19 Technology Access Pool — which has been taken up by the WHO. The Medicines Patent Pool has expanded its jurisdiction to include the sharing of IP related to COVID-19. There has also been discussion of the use of compulsory licensing and crown use to counteract profiteering and anti-competitive behavior. There has been a push by UAEM and others for the public licensing of COVID-19 technologies developed with government funding. The Open COVID Pledge has been taken by a number of intellectual property owners. In response to the assertion of proprietary rights in respect of COVID-19 technologies, the open movement has championed the development of Open Science models of science. India and South Africa have put forward a waiver proposal in the TRIPS Council to enable countries to take action in respect of COVID-19 without fear of retribution under trade laws.

Creative Commons Summit Thursday, 22 October 2020 • 08:00–09:00

Get Me PPE: 3D Printing, the Maker Movement, and the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis


This presentation evaluates the responses of both the commercial and amateur sides of the 3D printing community to the coronavirus COVID-19 public health crisis. In the US, Dale Dougherty of Make has promoted Plan C — in which volunteers have worked together to produce PPE. In Canada, an educational 3D printing company pivoted and made the Canadian Shield. In the EU, the Fab Lab Network sought to overcome a breakdown in supply chains. In Australia and NZ, 3D printing has been used to augment supplies of PPE. This talk considers the challenges of IP, medical regulation, and product liability.


Dr Matthew Rimmer is a Professor in Intellectual Property and Innovation Law at the Faculty of Law, at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT). He has published widely on copyright law and information technology, patent law and biotechnology, access to medicines, plain packaging of tobacco products, intellectual property and climate change, Indigenous Intellectual Property, and intellectual property and trade. Rimmer is currently working as a Chief Investigator on an ARC Discovery Project on ‘Inventing The Future: Intellectual Property and 3D Printing’ (2017–2020). He is also undertaking research on; the regulation of robotics and artificial intelligence; and intellectual property and public health (particularly looking at the coronavirus COVID-19). His work is archived at QUT ePrints, SSRN Abstracts, Bepress Selected Works, and Open Science Framework.



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Matthew Rimmer

Professor of Intellectual Property and Innovation Law, QUT. #Copyright #Patent #Trademark #plainpacks #Access2meds #SDGs #Climate #IndigenousIP #trade #TPP